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Thread: General thoughts and suggestions on HEX-NET

  1. #21
    FoRT jyoung8607's Avatar
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    More thoughts after some weekend play time.

    New UDS control modules: It's hard to find what I want in the sheer volume of data available. I'm used to ME7 cars and I kind of know where the interesting MVBs are. The ECU in my loaner 2013 Turbo Beetle appears to offer up nearly 1,000 separate data items. It takes a good while to set things up on VCDS Mobile just due to the volume and the browser interface. VCDS Desktop is faster to navigate, but the list is only partially alphabetized with no search available.

    I'd love to see some default presets made available for common troubleshooting scenarios. Some random examples:

    • Troubleshooting misfires: Select all individual cylinder misfire counters
    • Troubleshooting A/F ratios: Select mass air-flow specified and actual, all fuel trim data (turns out to be widely scattered now!), etc
    • Troubleshooting transmission slippage: Select current gear, engine RPM, transmission input RPM (TC slip), transmission output RPM, etc

    Both Desktop and Mobile do offer something of a way to craft our own presets, but with quite a bit of effort. Some default preset guidance would be helpful, especially on Mobile. If your eventual direction for Cloud is "GFF that doesn't suck", this would be a nice foundation piece to have.

    VCDS Cloud stuff: Any interaction I have with Cloud functions is really rocky. I had written this off to my home wireless range issue, but I spent some time today working via AT&T LTE tethering on my smartphone and I wasn't having much more luck. I do eventually get through, but I often have to try things several times. My laptop was on the same tethered BSSID so I could play with VCDS Desktop, and it had good connectivity. All three devices were in the same car. The server ping function under Options->Self Test seemed consistently okay. Do you know of any server-side reason I'd have trouble this weekend?

    I'm wondering if I have issues with tangled-up device registration records. I had to try registering the unit a few times today, and I thought I had gotten it successfully registered already a couple weeks ago. The provenance of my particular HEX-NET unit is a little unusual, as Uwe or Andy will know. It had definitely seen some cars before I received it. Before I start doing real network-layer digging, I thought I'd ask if there's any other explanation.

    The vcds-cloud.com website currently uses a self-signed TLS certificate. That creates kind of a speed-bump when we're handed off between HEX-NET and Cloud functions, especially when we're on a new device. I'm guessing that will change before HEX-NET comes out of Beta though.

    Jason

  2. #22
    FoRT jyoung8607's Avatar
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    One more thing: simultaneous use of VCDS Desktop and Mobile.

    I don't actually expect that to work. I did it purely by accident. I was doing some comparison testing and had forgotten I left VCDS Desktop running in the background, and tried to do some things with VCDS Mobile. Things got kind of explode-y on both sides. I realize that's a case of "Doc! It hurts when I do this!" - "Well don't do it!". However, it wouldn't hurt to augment the VCDS Mobile session ownership/stealing function to cover whatever API the VCDS Desktop software uses.

    Jason

  3. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by jyoung8607 View Post
    Not unreasonable. I had forgotten those cables exist. Thanks in advance for said package!


    Precisely. HEX-NET can be doing its thing from the moment it's powered up and sees it's plugged into a car.

    Take this even further: Dealers would love it. Dealer tech time = cash money. Imagine a setup where the service writer meeting the customer plugs in the unit first thing, then chats with the customer about their concerns or requests. In the background, HEX-NET is sitting there interrogating the car. Pick up a whole Auto Scan, snag the mileage, snag the SRI data, snag items of common interest like MVB 032 fuel trims, send it up to the cloud. By the time the service writer is done talking to the customer, they've got all that data sitting on their printer to hand to the tech. That is actual concrete ROI you can show dealers just for the time, even if they have to use GFF for warranty work afterward. That's before you get into upselling based on maintenance that's due or other faults that HEX-NET spies for them.

    Jason
    the newer vehicles store a lot of this data your talking about in the vehicle key, my dealer hasn't implented it yet, but it's supposed to tell them if the cel is on/if codes are stored... TPMS light... Time since last service, etc... Pretty cool stuff.... They take the customers key and put it in a reader and it'll populate the information.... I'm not sure how much.... But I remember hearing about those key items pun intended

    Here's a link to an old article

    http://www.autonews.com/article/2008...-boost-service
    Last edited by Crashking; 05-11-2014 at 11:16 AM.
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  5. #24
    FoRT jyoung8607's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Crashking View Post
    the newer vehicles store a lot of this data your talking about in the vehicle key, my dealer hasn't implented it yet ...
    I remember reading about that a while back for BMW. I didn't know Audi was doing it. I wonder if that'll make its way to VW?

    Either way, fully capable diagnostics would be even nicer. The service writers spend a lot of time talking to the customer, plus they have to tag the car, cover the seats, etc etc. From a business process perspective, it would be great to be running diagnostics in parallel with that. Not only is your total time reduced, part of that time is shifted to your service writer instead of your expensive profitable tech. Even if it ends up dumped onto paper to start, instead of integrated with their shop database, I think it would be all you need to pitch.

    RT Sales: "Hey service manager, how would you like to shave 5-10 minutes off every single ticket, just to start? Plus, you can also--"

    Service Manager:



    Jason

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  7. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by Uwe View Post
    But I still think the right way to use the device is with the OBD-II extension cable. Putting it somewhere that it's visible means it's unlikely to be forgotten
    Agreed - and on a slight tangent, are you gonna ship a user's manual with that cable? I ask because I received mine and spent 30s unsuccessfully trying to figure out how to reverse the right angle connection before I had to go back to work. What am I missing????

  8. #26
    FoRT jyoung8607's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by solomon View Post
    Agreed - and on a slight tangent, are you gonna ship a user's manual with that cable? I ask because I received mine and spent 30s unsuccessfully trying to figure out how to reverse the right angle connection before I had to go back to work. What am I missing????
    It took me a couple minutes too. On the end with the 1 meter cord, slide the plastic cap sideways, away from the direction the cable is pointed. It then lifts off, allowing you to route the cable the other way and reinstall the cap in the new orientation.






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  10. #27
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    Thanks! I was trying to move way too much of the shield

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  12. #28
    FoRT jyoung8607's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by solomon View Post
    Thanks! I was trying to move way too much of the shield
    I learned the hard way. I spent a minute or so poking at the DLC side. I figured it out after I popped the top off and heard the "Snap of Enlightenment", that same sound you hear when you become aware that trim piece you're removing had one last hidden screw you didn't take out. Fortunately, all of the retaining mechanism survived and I was able to figure out the actual right way by looking at the tabs.

    Jason

  13. #29
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    Quote Originally Posted by jyoung8607 View Post
    It took me a couple minutes too. On the end with the 1 meter cord, slide the plastic cap sideways, away from the direction the cable is pointed. It then lifts off, allowing you to route the cable the other way and reinstall the cap in the new orientation.
    Aha! Thank you.

    Always frustrating that I can deal with unbelievably complex systems with ease, but things like this and 'easy open' cheese slices seem to baffle me.


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  15. #30
    Benevolent Dictator Uwe's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by solomon View Post
    Agreed - and on a slight tangent, are you gonna ship a user's manual with that cable?
    User's manuals are so last-century. Nobody reads them anyway. Anyway, I think we'd be better off making a quick instructional video and embedding it in the store page referenced above.

    -Uwe-

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